Manila – The newly launched UNISDR Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies, ARISE, received a major boost today as 12 leading companies in the Philippines joined the global effort to ensure the private sector puts disaster risk information at the heart of investment strategies.
The pledges of support came during the 2015 Top Leaders Forum at the SMX Mall of Asia in Pasay City. Some 200 CEOs and executives from industries such as food, retail, manufacturing, banking and finance, media, consultancy, outsourcing, energy, water, education and real estate were present. It was the first time ARISE was introduced in Southeast Asia.
The following companies have now joined over 100 other companies around the world in backing the ARISE initiative: GMA Network, Union Bank, Double Dragon Properties, Philippine Business for the Environment, DHL Supply Chain Philippines, Build Change, Nestle Philippines, Jollibee Foundation, The Net Group, Aboitiz Ventures, Weather Philippines Foundation and Pricewater Cooper Philippines.
The President of SM Prime and ARISE international board member, Mr. Hans Sy, said today: “The Philippines is still recovering from Typhoon Haiyan which claimed over 6,000 lives, left many homeless and severely damaged the national economy.
“Our country is one of the most disaster exposed in the world and this is why so many leading companies here are keen to join ARISE. Risk-informed private sector investment is more cost-effective than relying on post-disaster response and recovery.”
The head of UNISDR, Ms. Margareta Wahlström, said: “The successful launch today of ARISE in the Philippines sends an encouraging message to the private sector across Asia and the globe that the business community is well placed to make an important contribution towards building resilience to disasters.
“Private investment largely determines disaster risk. In most economies 70% to 85% of overall investment is made by the private sector. If this money is well-spent it will help reduce disaster losses which are now estimated at about $300 billion per year.”
ARISE was launched to support implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction which was adopted in March, 2015, at a UN World Conference in Sendai, Japan. The Sendai Framework seeks a substantial reduction in disaster losses over the next 15 years and promotes the full involvement of the private sector in initiatives at local and national level to reduce disaster risk and to promote investment in resilient infrastructure capable of withstanding floods, storms, earthquakes and other natural and man-made hazards.
Also in attendance during the pledge to action today were Ms. Sandra Wu, ARISE board member, and Sen. Loren Legarda, UNISDR Champion, Mr. Mario G. Montejo, Secretary of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), Ms. Corazon Jimenez, General Manager of the Metro Manila Development Authority, and Mr. Alexander Pama, Executive Director of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC).